The Birth of Bluer Denim

A local denim start up with heavy hitters behind it wants to revolutionize the entire denim industry.

By Eden Dawn June 13, 2013

Agave Denim founder Jeff Shafer isn’t happy about what’s happened to the manufacturing world in the US. After decades in the business, he’s seen the decline of quality, the decline of jobs at home, and prices rise. A go-getting self-made denim guru, the Portland-based entrepreneur is doing his darndest to start a revolution in the denim world with the birth of Bluer denim.

A company that evokes such a strong reaction in their ethical and practical principles it reached its full Kickstarter goal amount in less than a week. But with 20 days left to go, there is still an opportunity to get in on the ground floor of this national line with hometown roots. Read on for all the reasons to fall in love from the founder himself.


BLUER DENIM is a transparently sourced American premium denim brand. We will build and distribute world-class, 100% Made-in-the-USA jeans and denim products exclusively online, at previously impossible prices. BLUER aspires to become a global leader in ethical business practices that include providing recycled and re-purposed denim to people in need, as well as strict corporate responsibility and a reduced environmental impact.

Denim is our world, our life, and our passion. We’re obsessed with it. Designed in our studio in Portland, Oregon, our jeans feature cotton grown in Georgia, Cone White Oak denim milled in North Carolina, and YKK buttons, rivets and zippers forged in Kentucky. The jeans are cut, sewn, washed and hand-finished in Los Angeles using eco-friendly ozone laundry processes. BLUER products are beautifully tailored and finished to the highest possible standards, right here in the U.S.

Our jeans start at a retail price of only $95. BLUER’s web-only pricing is approximately 50% lower than comparable products sold through the traditional wholesale/retail model—and often these products are made overseas, using lesser quality materials and trims. Other brands may claim to be premium denim, but BLUER really is genuinely premium denim, in every sense of the word.

In designing our jeans and other denim pieces, no expense or detail was spared. We chose America's oldest and most historic denim manufacturer, Cone Mills, with 120 years of experience making the finest American denim at their White Oak plant in Greensboro, North Carolina. BLUER leather patches are vegetable dyed English bridle leather handcrafted by our friends at Tanner Goods here in Portland. Every pair of jeans and every jacket has a unique serial number sewn into the garment that allows us to identify when the product was sold, enabling us to honor our one year warranty. Our belt loops are tucked and our back pockets are fully lined. These are just a few of the many premium details featured on our products. 

Because of our position on transparency, here is what you cannot see… All our metal for buttons, burrs, rivets and zippers is forged in the USA by YKK and are certified nickel free. Our pocketing is woven in the USA by Cotswold Industries using only cotton grown in the USA. Our thread is made in the USA by Coats. Our jeans are cut and sewn in Los Angeles. Our jeans washed in Los Angeles using state of the art eco-friendly ozone technology. All packaging is made with recycled paper and printed with non-toxic inks.


Many people find the task of trying on jeans in stores to be arduous and even annoying. When our new site is complete, our customers will be able to try on up to three pairs of jeans in their own home – with their shoes, their shirts; with their girlfriend, boyfriend or best get the idea. And they can do it all on their own schedules, without the pressure of a fitting-room environment and a salesperson on commission.

Here’s how it works: Simply select up to three pairs of jeans to try, and add them to the “Home Try On” cart.  BLUER will ship right to your front door, and you’ll have enough time to either ship them back or purchase and keep them – you’ll only pay for what you keep, and not a penny if you keep none. There are absolutely no up-front fees, and no shipping costs. This is a world-first for the denim industry. We also offer a straight purchase option if you already know what you want.


BLUER is introducing a new humanitarian and sustainable solution designed to get unwanted jeans out of your closets, and into the hands of those in need. For every pair of jeans you purchase, Bluer will buy back your used pair for $5, sanitize them, and deliver them to someone who really needs them. This is extremely important to us and we think (and hope) it’s just as important to you.  Our Buy One - Give One jean re-purposing program will begin with the launch of our web site.


By not paying for traditional and costly wholesale/retail-industry staples like product samples, trade conventions, commissions, both wholesale & retail mark-ups and other supply chain costs, Bluer is funneling those savings straight to our customers.

This also enables us to offer you an unprecedented one-year warranty against product failure. Should you experience any problem with your jeans, simply send us a photo of the jean's serial number and a photo of the problem and we will either repair or replace them for free.


Bluer is not just a new denim label—it’s a passion project for us. We are hoping to transform the way people buy jeans forever. Our team has decades of experience in the global denim industry at the highest level, with brands like Levi’s, BC Ethic, Diesel, Agave, Rock & Republic, Rag & Bone and Citizens of Humanity. We're leveraging this experience, along with our combined backgrounds in design, manufacturing, technology, branding and marketing, to change the game. Our vision is to do so by adding convenience, value, social responsibility, personalization, exploration, and entertainment to the premium denim buying process.

With the funds from this Kickstarter campaign, we will not only be fulfilling our first production run of limited edition jeans, jackets, shirts, and accessories for our backers, we’ll also be funding a denim industry transformation – creating an unparalleled buying experience. 

Filed under
Show Comments